Construction inspectors (NOC 2264)

High opportunity occupation

About this job

Construction inspectors inspect and examine buildings, bridges, highways and construction sites to ensure that specifications, building codes and safety regulations are observed.

Want to learn more? Watch this WorkBC Career Trek video and see what it’s like to work in this type of career.

People in this occupation:

  • are employed by federal, provincial and municipal governments; construction and real estate companies; and architectural and civil engineering consulting firms, and may also be self-employed
  • have a wide range of knowledge of construction techniques, building codes and standards
  • must be well organized and analytical, and have the ability to communicate information clearly and precisely
  • should have good mathematical skills
Common job titles
  • construction inspector supervisor
  • foreperson, construction inspectors
  • inspector, building
  • inspector, closed-circuit TV sewer
  • inspector, CMHC
  • inspector, electrical


Construction inspectors:

  • examine plans, drawings and site layouts for new buildings, building renovations and other proposed structures
  • inspect construction of buildings, bridges, dams, highways and other structures for conformance to drawings, specifications, building codes or other applicable acts and standards regulating construction
  • inspect and test electrical or plumbing installations in buildings to ensure compliance with municipal, provincial and federal regulations
  • inspect steel framework, reinforcing steel mesh and rods, concrete forms or pre-stressed concrete to ensure quality standards and to verify conformance to specifications and building codes
  • inspect construction sites to ensure that safe working conditions are maintained
  • inspect existing buildings to identify and report on structural defects, fire hazards and other threats to safety
  • inspect new or resale homes on behalf of clients and assess and provide reports on the physical condition of property

Building inspectors:

Building inspectors are local government officials primarily involved in new construction and renovation. They are members of the Building Officials’ Association of BC and many also belong to the Plumbing Officials’ Association of British Columbia and perform plumbing inspections. Workers in this occupation:

  • ensure compliance with the structural as well as health and safety requirements as outlined by local government by-laws, the BC Building Code, BC Fire Code and other related acts and standards
  • keep diligent records of the project and co-ordinate with contractors, engineers, other professionals and agencies
  • assist applicants with the permit process

Home and property inspectors:

Home and property inspectors primarily work on existing structures for the private and real estate sector. Workers in this occupation:

  • inspect buildings to identify and report on structural defects and possible deterioration since construction
  • report on the condition of a home’s systems, components and structure (e.g., roofing, plumbing, electrical wiring, and heating or cooling systems)
  • assess the physical condition of the property where the home is located and provide detailed reports on the property and house being inspected, including a comprehensive checklist of the home’s condition

Registered fire protection technicians:

  • visit construction sites and inspect work that is in progress
  • inspect construction projects to ensure compliance with safety regulations, with fire safety as the primary concern
  • inspect fire sprinklers, alarms, smoke control systems and fire exits
  • assess adjoining buildings to determine any risks posed by the type of construction, building contents and fire protection equipment
  • enforce laws pertaining to the fire safety status of buildings and instruct violators of fire regulations to comply with codes, obtain permits and submit to further inspections
  • provide information to the public and conduct education and information sessions about the fire code and fire safety and prevention

Construction safety officers:

  • make scheduled and unscheduled visits to construction sites to assess the safety of the work environment
  • reinforce universal safety measures, ensuring that protective clothing, such as hard hats, goggles, ear protection and steel-toed footwear, is worn
  • make supervisors and workers aware of potentially hazardous situations
  • observe the construction, repair and maintenance of highways, bridges, dams and other types of building and engineering projects to ensure the safety of workers
  • provide information to the public

Work environment

Construction inspectors typically work a regular 40-hour week. However, overtime may be required to complete projects and meet deadlines, and some inspectors may have a varied work schedule that includes weekends and evenings.

Construction inspectors spend a portion of their work day visiting construction sites (which can be noisy and dirty) and field offices. Some work sites are located outdoors, exposing workers to various weather conditions.

Although the work is generally not considered hazardous, inspectors wear hard hats and follow proper safety measures while on a construction site. They may also be required to work from ladders or crawl in tight spaces.

Additional hazards for fire protection technicians may include electrical shocks and exposure to hazardous chemicals, but following safety procedures reduces the risks.

Insights from industry

All new job openings are expected in response to the need to replace retiring workers.

Although the majority of construction inspectors are employed in the Public Administration and Professional Business Services industries, demand is driven by the Construction industry. Government funding for capital projects could be an important source of construction employment. Growth in construction activities will support demand for construction inspection services by both local governments and private buyers.

In addition, growing concerns about public safety and building quality in the aftermath of the “leaky condo” problems have resulted in changes to the building code, which have increased the demand for inspection services. Building inspection services for prospective home buyers is a growing source of employment.

Career paths and resources

Career paths

Municipal and regional district building inspectors are generally members of the Building Officials’ Association of BC (BOABC), the certifying body for municipal inspectors and code professionals.

Inspectors gain certification as level 1, level 2 and level 3 building inspectors through a series of study sessions, exams and experience.

  • The complexity of the building dictates the certification level required for inspection; for example, a 10-storey, mixed-use building would require a level 3 building inspector. A level 3 building inspector is considered a semi-professional and is entitled to RBO (Registered Building Official) designation.
  • Municipal and regional district plumbing inspectors are generally members of the Plumbing Officials’ Association of British Columbia (POABC). The POABC offers education and certification of level 1 and level 2 plumbing inspectors.

With experience, construction inspectors can also advance to supervisory positions or start their own businesses.

Additional resources